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UNLV Football Coach On Best Way To Make A Mark On Competitive Las Vegas Sports Market: ‘We Have To Play Winning Football’
UNLV Football Coach On Best Way To Make A Mark On Competitive Las Vegas Sports Market: ‘We Have To Play Winning Football’



By Alan Snel, LVSportsBiz.com Publisher-Writer

San Diego State football coach Brady Hoke took a seat next to a local San Diego broadcaster at a round table for lunch Thursday, cut into a seasoned chicken breast and then speared the pasta on his plate.

I sat across the table from Hoke, who answered questions earlier this morning at the Mountain West football media days about whether San Diego State had wanted to stay or leave the conference. A letter from San Diego State’s president in June seemed to indicate the university was going to “resign” from the MWC in 2024. But SDSU’s sports teams are playing in the MWC for 2023-24.

LVSportsBiz.com covers Allegiant Stadium. So I asked Hoke about the Raiders’ Allegiant Stadium, where his Aztecs football squad played UNLV in 2021. The San Diego State coach said he liked the venue and was amazed at its retractable playing field technology.

Media days for college football conferences are kind of like that — loosey-goosey chatfests where football coaches belly up to the lunch food line for grub just like all the lowly-paid media folks.

The San Diego State issue was probably the thorniest topic at MWC media days.

UNLV Athletic Director Erick Harper on left and UNLV football coach Barry Odom share laughs at MWC media days Thursday. Photo: LVSportsBiz.com

Typically, these coaches at these casual media events are tossed non-controversial questions.

UNLV’s new coach, Barry Odom, is a polished speaker and has been around the college football block as former head coach of Missouri from 2016-19 and ran the defense for Arkansas the last three seasons.

The 46-year-old father of a linebacker and  quarterback became UNLV’s 13th head coach, but the first with previous head coaching experience on the FBS level since former USC coach John Robinson led UNLV from 1999-2004.

He answered a slew of questions professionally and was never flustered, keeping an even tone while not shy about making points like backing college sports’ Name, Image, Likeness sponsorship payment deals, believing there’s space for a UNLV football program in a highly competitive sports market and explaining his attraction to the “enticing” Las Vegas market.

LVSportsBiz.com asked Odom several questions:

One pressure to win — “There’s pressure to turn this into a winner. It is very personal with me. Pressure, you bet.”

On selling UNLV football to locals — “We captured some good energy . . . We have to play winning football. We have to be visible, accessible and the city will follow.

On sports market competition — “There’s enough people to have college football be important. There’s plenty of space for (UNLV football).”

On NIL:

UNLV 🏈 coach Barry Odom: pro NIL pic.twitter.com/vu7XnGU1qq

— LVSportsBiz.com (@LVSportsBiz) July 20, 2023

“𝐈𝐭’𝐬 𝐧𝐨𝐭 𝐚 𝐥𝐨𝐧𝐠 𝐭𝐞𝐫𝐦 𝐩𝐫𝐨𝐣𝐞𝐜𝐭. 𝐈𝐭’𝐬 𝐚 𝐫𝐢𝐠𝐡𝐭 𝐧𝐨𝐰 𝐩𝐫𝐨𝐣𝐞𝐜𝐭. 𝐓𝐨 𝐠𝐨 𝐰𝐢𝐧 𝐚𝐬 𝐟𝐚𝐬𝐭 𝐚𝐬 𝐰𝐞 𝐜𝐚𝐧”@Coach_Odom | @MountainWest pic.twitter.com/hIxeGyqE4q

— UNLV Football (@unlvfootball) July 20, 2023

Some other coaches:

Things might be interesting when the Pac-12 media day rolls into Las Vegas Friday.


The post UNLV Football Coach On Best Way To Make A Mark On Competitive Las Vegas Sports Market: ‘We Have To Play Winning Football’ appeared first on LVSportsBiz.

This content was originally published here.

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